DESIGN NOTES: Restaurant in Historic Building, A Must-See Style Destination

Aberdeen Street Social may have been operating for a few months now, but I bet you haven’t seen photos like these of the new Restaurant/Cafe/Bar’s design concept by award-winning, Shanghai based, Neri & Hu Design Research Office. The just-released images of the restaurant’s interiors reflect the unique collaboration between the designers, Lyndon Neri and Rosanna Hu, with the restaurant’s founder, Yenn Wong, with Michelin-rated star, Chef Jason Atherton. To add more creativity to the mix, the whole bar/restaurant is situated in a re-appropriated historic building which used to house the Junior Police Clubhouse and Junior School within the just opened, Police Married Quarters (PMQ) Design complex. Plus at the Cafe’s entrance on ground floor, guests won’t miss a fantastic new interactive art piece, by 2014 Sovereign Asian Art Prize winner, Adrian Wong, of a series of octagonal barber shop poles on a clover mosaic, pieces which are reclaimed from a residence within the PMQ itself.

The concept for the interiors and the restaurant is all about creating an inclusive environment of convivial social get-togethers over meals, cocktails, and dessert. The ground floor is defined by its large bar and cake display, plus two rows of tables for groups of any size, while the dining room upstairs is for more intimate experiences, with all tables enhanced by bespoke pendant lamps. An outdoor patio, a room length balcony, and a garden terrace framing the property allows guests to stretch out within this special urban oasis.

To complete the social experience, the Managers are outfitted in Black Fleece by Brooks Brothers, a line designed especially by award-winning designer, Thom Browne.

via Lyndon Neri, principal designer:

"We decided to rejuvenate the convivial spirit within the ancillary building of what was once the Junior Police Clubhouse (JPC) and Junior school at PMQ by creating an ambient atmosphere to encourage creative minds to gather and interact with each other."

This isn’t the first time Neri & Hu has worked with Yenn Wong, check out their other collaborative projects here.

EAT Aberdeen Street Social . JPC, GF 35 Aberdeen Street, Central, Hong Kong (entrance at Hollywood Road intersection of Aberdeen Street) . T: +852.28660300 . Reservations are necessary / DESIGN Neri & Hu

JJ.

DESIGN NOTES:  Your Own Working Loft Space In Chai Wan, Finally

With more and more creative start ups, entrepreneurs, non-profits, and freelancers in the city, investors in Hong Kong are finally giving some of these non-corporate dreamers a stab at an atypical non-corporate kind of working environment to cater to this niche, but steadily growing market of self employed heroes. In the last few years we’ve seen spaces like The Hive, Regus, or Garage pop up in Central… but sometimes even then, these things get too crowded or too corporate.

That said some of us have friends who work in these big loft spaces in Chai Wan or Wong Chuk Hang, and are completely envious of their free-wheeling artsy lives. Well envy no more… now launched in Chai Wan is a new “New York like” decorated loft space about 3000 square foot large designed just for future-space-starved-free-wheelers. Puerta del Sol, as it is called, co founded by Harold de Puymorin with two other partners, aims to offer a new kind of hot desk venue, that allows community engagement plus admin services to anybody in need of such a space.

Designers, Artists, Architects, Photographers, Writers, PR gurus, heck even accountants, are all welcome here. Plus Puerta del Sol can aid members with Business Registrations, VISAs, marketing, legal, and accounting services. Anyway to lift freelancers of the ground… which is great for a whopping 1,888 HKD a month of membership don’t you think?

"Open Hearts, Open Minds" is the Puerta del Sol motto… I care more about "Open Space" and "Open Community", and in Hong Kong where that’s hardly on offer, hopefully the "scene" proposed at Puerta del Sol is the answer we’ve all been looking for.

Plus the loft’s design looks completely amazing.

VISIT Puerta del Sol Hong Kong . Reality Tower, 4 Sun On Street, Unit 8 D, Siu Sai Wan, Hong Kong

JJ.

DESIGN NOTES: A Compact Cafe, Nespresso Wins Red Dot Award

In my house, like the bachelor that I am, I can make you anything you want… as long as it’s whisky straight up or coffee. That’s it. (Well I just added Protein shakes to the menu. If you’re into that kind of thing.) For Whisky, I can give you scotch or something from Japan. For coffee, it’s an Illy Espresso, beans from a plunger, or my personal favorite… a Livanto, Carmelito, Vanilio, or Arpeggio blend from Nespresso.

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I’ve been a big fan of Nespresso since the product became more global in the early 2000’s. (The first patent for the machine was in 1996, while the Nespresso system itself was invented in 1976?!!?) I’ve had a few of their machines in the last decade. We even have one in my design office.

Anyway, this July, Nespresso Hong Kong sent me a surprise gift, a whopping brand new Nespresso Inissia machine with an accompanying Aeroccino milk frother in black. Pretty cool. In addition they sent me a box of  almost each of the 22 Grand Crus in their current library. For those who are not in Nespresso, there maybe a chance you’ve just had a Grand Cru flavour that just didn’t taste right for you. For example, hotels with machines usually carry the Fortissio Lungo, Ristretto, Decaffeinato, Indriya from India, or Cosi… all the flavours I do not like, is too bitter, or is too bland…. in my personal opinion. If it wasn’t for this box of samples, I wouldn’t have been able to discover new flavours beyond the Arpeggio, Kazaar, Capriccio, or Roma, which I drink. If you’re confused by all these names, dont be… the best thing to do if you’re curious about Nespresso, is to A) go to the new Flagship store in the IFC everyday and get free samples at the Espresso bar (I dare you), or B), buy a box of samples from Nespresso and write a little note, like I do, after you taste each one to rate / discover your favourite ones. (Obviously i’m obsessed.)

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Other things to note… the new Inissia machine now available in Hong Kong and Asia, is the recipient of the prestigious annual Red Dot Award 2014 for best Product Design. The machine, designed by Antoine Cahen’s Les Atelier du Nord from Switzerland, is apparently a result of designers and engineers working together in close cooperation. This featherweight machine is very light and compact, the base only measuring 23x12 CM. The design is also focused on ergonomics and user interface. The handle opens and closes the machine, and one two buttons press for two different quantities of coffee, simple as that. The Jury prized the Inissia for reducing the machine to base essentials of use, and it’s small compact size makes it ideal for small kitchens… including those we are used to in Hong Kong.

You can actually play with the machine at the newly opened flagship in the IFC mall in Central Hong Kong. In addition, the IFC has various models of the Inissia in various colours.

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Also the IFC Flagship for Nespresso can teach you how to make simple coffees, to more complex drinks like lattes, cappuccinos, caramel macchiatos, and even their 2014 summer drinks like the “Tropical Mango Coffee”.

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That said i’d like to note that NOT EVERYONE IS A FAN OF NESPRESSO because of its potential contribution to waste (as with all other cartridge-based consumer product out there).

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This BUZZFEED article that an angry friend sent me pretty much outlines why people refuse to have this or other coffee-pod machines at home. This article from “Zero Waste Europe” is better at explaining what is going on with capsule waste, coffee’s organic waste, and the environment. I suggest you read these articles too if you plan on being a responsible owner of a Nespresso Machine.  

Nespresso is not for everyone, but I like it… and that said, it’s my responsibility as a consumer to make sure I dispose of these capsules, as much as i take care in recycling my waste papers and plastics at home and work. Online there’s more information from Nespresso about their collection and recycling methods per region, and at the store there’s a big BIG area all about capsule waste issues and a collection area for your used capsules, plus capsule bags for you to take home. Make sure to store all  your used capsules in these bags in your fridge to keep the whole thing from getting overly moldy.

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I guess I want to re-iterate… if you buy a Nespresso machine because like me, you like it so much… or drive a car, or own a dog, or purchase a house, or drink from water bottles daily, or take lots flights… be a responsible owner, and think of your waste, your carbon foot print, your plants, pets, and everything else. Just use common sense, and think of recycling your used pods.

Back to the Nespresso flagship… in a way, the IFC Flagship store is a design haven for the brand. On offer are all the different types of Nespresso machines, including the higher end machinew with more vintage looks.

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Also on offer for fans are cups, glasses, and Travel mugs.

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It’s Delicious. But Drink Responsibly. Recycle Them!

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VISIT Nespresso IFC Mall . Shop 1058, Podium 1, ifc Mall, HK Central / DESIGN Les Ateliers du Nord  

JJ.

#theWanderlist: F11 Photographic Museum Opens in Happy Valley, Housed in Restored Art Deco Structure

Here’s something new in the neighborhood, the F11 Photographic Museum located in Happy Valley Hong Kong will mark its official opening with a Best in Show exhibition by legendary American photographer, Elliott Erwitt, who will himself attend the museum’s launch on September 18th. Erwitt is expected to sign copies of his latest book, Regarding Women that same week.

Best in Show is curated by the museum’s owner, Douglas So who is a former corporate lawyer and philanthropist, and photography expert, India Dhargalkar, and will feature over 50 original photographs from Erwitt’s collection.

“Our vision for F11 Photographic Museum is to generate interest in photography and an appreciation for the art form,” explains So. “We do this through our curated collection of rare cameras, books and prints. In choosing to house the museum in a Grade III historic building, we also hope to encourage more private conservation and revitalisation of Hong Kong’s heritage properties.”

The new museum occupies a three-storey Art Deco ex-residential building, newly restored in the neighborhood’s Yuk Sau Street. The ground and first floors are expected to house exhibitions, while the second floor will be a private museum to showcase… a VAST DISPLAY OF LEICA CAMERAS, including a Model A Anastigmat from 1925… which was the first year Leitz sold cameras to the public. The upper level of the museum will be home to over 1000 titles from the Magnum Book collection, including many rare and first signed editions and maquettes… available to the public for research purposes.

VISIT Elliott Erwitt’s ‘Best In Show’ Exhibition at the  F11 Photographic Museum 18 September to 30 November . 11 Yuk Sau Street, Happy Valley, Hong Kong . T: +852-65161122 

JJ.

#theWanderlist: A Style Revival at Bangkok’s Hotel Muse

Thanks to The Luxe Nomad, me and two friends were able to take a summer pause in order to refresh and revive with a quick three-day escape from one urban jungle… into another at Bangkok’s quirky Hotel Muse, part of the “M Gallery” brands of hotels under Accor group. Hotel Muse has actually been in operation for about 4-5 years, and is situated right in the centre of it all, but a little ways away from the actual hustle of Bangkok’s central shopping district, Siam Square, only some stops away on the elevated train. 

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Speaking of elevated train, Hotel Muse is less than a block away from the Phloen Chit stop, which is connected to both, Central Chidlom and the brand new silvery and shiny, Central Embassy Mall. (I was too busy relaxing, so I didn’t even get to go.) That said, who cares about malls, my friends just wanted to get rest, eat, spa, and go to JJ-Market. Thats it. And who can blame them… Hong Kong is already full of malls!

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Hotel Muse, part romantic getaway-part business hotel, is all about “dark sophistication” which is due to its Rama-V era concept, and houses 174 rooms, 11 suites, a sitting library, a full gym (with two bored trainers), a sitting pool (swimming is difficult in there), and a few destination restaurants. People come to Hotel Muse’s Medici restaurant for the best in modern-rustic Italian fare that apparently makes some really great steaks and wine pairings. The Speakeasy is the Muse’s answer to an old-style mixology bar, but with a rooftop view of the city. Su Tha Ros, hosts the hotel’s morning breakfast (which is so-so), but transforms into a wonderful Thai restaurant in the evening that a bunch of my local high-society friends who live there go because it offers a private and more intimate dining experience with authentic Thai fare.

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Generally everyone was happy with their stay. What really made it was that everyone slept so well in Hotel Muse’s beds… ie. could be the best part of the hotel. Everyone, including I, has been so stressed out within the last few weeks that we all agreed, a separation from Hong Kong in general, is a plus… tack on a nice quality bed and you’ve got a winning trip.

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The owner of the Hotel is really into historical nostalgia ie. he has a few personal antique pieces throughout the property. Additionally he loves the word “muse”, because it reminds him of these other words… “music”, “Museum”, “musing”, “amusement park”, etc. which harks back to the concept of creation and exhibition, which to me pretty much describes the hotel’s quirky and showy Asia-Euro-inspired decor. The letter “M” is also everywhere in the hotel, which is tied to this branding with the word “muse” and the “M” Gallery group.

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Whether the style of Interiors is for you or not is dependant on your taste, but the design direction is whimsical where it’s necessary (in the public areas and restaurants) and restrained when needed (in your bedroom.)

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All I know is, anywhere with a DIY Bloody Mary station for breakfast is fine by me.

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When in Bangkok, make sure to make a stop at JJ Market ie. Chatuchak / Jatujak, which I absolutely love. I go there all the time, and I post about it on this blog each time I go because you know what… there’s always something new to see, something new on offer, and the Thais really have style and trends for next year already figured out NOW and have it on offer at Chatuchak. My friends who live there think i’m so silly because they fly to Hong Kong and Japan to shop. That said it’s a different kind of shopping, and it’s not only Thailand… every country I go to, I don’t buy souvenirs… I buy local designer pieces. You know, I’m all about supporting local style ecosystems! If its something you can keep for more than two years (wherever it’s from), then it’s worth it.

Some of the new shops/concepts at Jatujak (Chatuchak) I discovered on this trip include, A Laboratory, a casual his/hers boutique with a bar/cafe adjacent.

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This casual shirts shop called, Kook, with really nice prints.

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This place made great shirts and accessories for men. It’s called, does mondays have an apostrophe before the s?. I kid you not.

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My friend bought two pieces here at Tar Mafia. Who knew?

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I love the ceramic and brass jewellery on offer at Mary Lou.

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I bought quite a few shirts here at SM Object.

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They also had simple accessories on offer.

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This one was my friend’s take home from JJ Market. Insanity.

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We again thank The Luxe Nomad booking website AND Hotel Muse for our wonderful two-night stay in their property. Hotel Muse plus other properties are available at cut rate costs at on that amazing website which specializes in relaxing and tasteful getaways in the region.

Where to next?

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BOOK The Luxe Nomad / STAY Hotel Muse Bangkok . 55/555 Langsuan Road, Ploenchit Road, Lumpini, Pathumwan, Bangkok 10330, Thailand / DRINK The Speakeasy Rooftop Bar / EAT Medici Kitchen & Bar / WEAR A Laboratory . Jatujak Weekend Market, Section 4, Soi 49.2 / WEAR Mary Lou . Jatujak Weekend Market, Section 4 Soi 2, Shop Number 083 

JJ.

SG_WOMEN_615x100 New Season

DESIGN NOTES: A Panoply of Dreams, Omar Khan Home Collection Debuts

My pal whom I first met in Hong Kong, Parsons graduate and amazing designer, Omar Khan, made a name for himself doing great visual merchandising work for On Pedder and then Joyce before going solo doing freelance work for events, and as a spatial designer under his new company, The Omar Khan Collective. Omar then moved from Hong Kong to Malaysia a few years ago, to continue his work for clients and friends in the broader region, which, through his various projects, he was able to slowly accumulate a whole archive of artisan-crafted handmade featured carpets he has created through his journey which can now be sold under a sub-moniker, Omar Khan Home

Omar Khan Home, has since debuted this past year at the first Maison et Objet Asia Singapore in March 2014, and has already been exhibited at Lane Crawford’s Chengdu Flagship… with word on the street that it may also be on offer here at Lane Crawford in Hong Kong as well. (Will keep you updated on this.)  

Omar Khan, a Singaporean with Dutch, Chinese, Egyptian, Pakistani, and German roots, was educated in the states since High School to college, uses his amalgamated past experiences to create designs which re-orient the “orient”, but in a graphic format that is contemporary and romantic… ie. “a panoply of objects, textures, and sensations”, according to him. The line as of now consists of 15 designs, with each comprising of about 3 different variations and made of wool, viscose, and silk… all hand tufted in Malaysia with Omar’s personal guidance on each piece that goes from factory to client. His signature rugs are quintessentially memorable and are each defined by “strong graphic motifs and fantastical elements” which Omar says are derived from his “dreams”. We have a quick chat with Omar about the new Omar Khan Home line and his amazing 2014 debut so far.

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theWanderlister+: Congratulations Omar on the launch of the the Omar Khan Home, tell me about the new line and how it fits conceptually with your design company, The Omar Khan Collective?

Omar Khan: The Omar Khan Collective and the home brand, Omar Khan Home, is really a company and product that wants to tell your story, be it thru lifestyle, retail, residential or commercial projects. We shy away from trends and we believe a personal investment into your life means more. I suppose thats why I decided to launch with a collection of statement rugs.

From an interior perspective, I always felt that having a rug in your space is an anchoring element. From a wellness perspective, we see the rug as more than just a rug, it’s a statement. You chose that piece because on some level it resonated with you. 

theW+: The last time you were on Wanderlister.com, we discussed your VM work for Papillon, a lifestyle boutique destination in Kuala Lumpur. That was about 4 years ago. Do you still do similar kinds of work today? And how does your work for The Omar Khan Collective feed into your home styling brand and vice versa?

OK: We are first and foremost an interior focused company. We have a consulting arm that deals with issues outside the realm of interiors but still very much intrinsic to the end presentation, We have done big atrium installations for two malls in Kuala Lumpur and some VM and  branding consultation around the region.

Within the consultancy we have what we call “Crafted and Curated” and this is an initiative specific to hotels who want to up the ante with their gift stores. Omar Khan Home will be expanding into scented candles and luxury towels which we will use to anchor the merchandise selection and then add on with a special curation from local artisans. Selfishly i miss a really good hotel gift store so to be able to bring that back is very interesting to me.

theW+: The feedback of your work has been quite positive. Some of your rugs have been showcased throughout China via Lane Crawford and other parts of Asia as well. Why do you think that the response has been so great? Did you expect it all?

OK: For me the rugs are a labor of love, which comes from a pure creative side that I feel resonates with people. I am planning a series of trunk shows throughout the region and it will be interesting to see the perspective on the collection from country to country. I always believe in the transformative effects a rug can have on a person and in their home, so for me that positive response specific to wellness is quite rewarding.

theW+: Who do you look to as your design heroes?

OK: I suppose they come from all different design fields. Hayze Menon, the man behind the music from my video, Brian Christie, who concepted and directed it, Meredith McLean, a creative powerhouse whose ability to take your vision and go the extra mile to turn it into reality. I’ve been privileged  enough to work with them and continue working with them on collaborative projects moving forward. 

Statement Rugs by Omar Khan Home from Omar Khan on Vimeo.

In regards to the usual suspects, I’ve always had Ray and Charles Eames, up there on the same pedestal as well as Erwin Olaff, Tim Walker & Dries van Noten.

theW+: What else will we see from Omar Khan Home, I know you will be collaborating with Lane Crawford in Hong Kong, among other projects…

OK: Moving forward, as a company our biggest ethos is that everything presented by The Omar Khan Collective should resonate with you. I hope to expand into Bed & Bath products with a range of oversized luxury towels, chinaware, fabric, and wallpaper collaborations. Such is the case for our brand new and very limited range of scented candles from France. There are 4 notes - our hero scent “Fleure Blanche”, “Palace”, “Lounge”, and my personal favourite “Bad Boy”. I have such great dreams for them in my head : )

DESIGN Omar Khan Collective and Omar Khan Home

JJ.

DESIGN NOTES: Designer Stefano Tordiglione Breathes New Life in Brooks Brothers Hong Kong Flagship

The Menswear market is huge in Asia, and especially in Hong Kong, so no wonder there’s been a great selection of casual, business, and luxury bespoke tailoring labels that have entered the city within the last few years. The newest player in town is a beautiful new flagship for American tailoring company, Brooks Brothers, in the IFC. This project, by HK-based studio, Stefano Tordiglione Design, seeks inspiration from the house’s original flagship in New York City on Madison Avenue as the creative basis of its conceptual direction.

Items reminiscent of the original Manhattan architecture include the shop’s exterior stucco plasters which surround columns, the interior ceiling, and the window details. A cash-wrap island in the middle of the shop, greets customers at entry, reminiscent of classic destination Department Stores in history. Antique pieces are also used for the shop’s various fixtures and visual merchandising islands, plus all furnishings are crafted in Chicago Heritage and American Walnut to reflect the brand’s American heritage. New designs incorporated by Stefano Tordiglione include a fresh take on the industrial-style chandelier, and fitting rooms which reflect old style Chicago lofts. Also on display in the shop are large-scale photographs of Brooks Brothers heritage shirts over time from its first ready-to-wear collection, button downs, and non-iron shirts.

Other design innovations include a whimsical direction for the shop’s mosaic floor, handmade in Italy and redesigned to resemble a classic New York pavement, the pale green striped walls based on a Park Avenue flat, and on the timber façade… a bronze geometric pattern based on a classic window pane from a 20th Century Long Island mansion. The message is clear, classic heritage is modern again.

Brooks Brothers will soon be celebrating its 200-year anniversary, and Stefano Tordiglione Design makes sure that the Hong Kong IFC flagship will be ready to give new life as it stands on a strong brand’s DNA. 

SHOP Brooks Brothers IFC . Shop 1096, 8 Finance Street, Central, HK, 3196 8228 HK . T: +852 2234 7088 / DESIGN Stefano Tordiglione Design LTD

JJ.

#theWanderlist: BEP Vietnamese Kitchen Stands Out By Fusing Street Style Viet Meals With Low-Key “Normcore” Branded Design, And It Works

For some new dining destinations in Hong Kong, maybe the best way to stand out is to keep things minimalist, easy, and not look like theres so much effort in trying to stand out. I mean new “must-go” restaurants in this city open almost every week, and this current normcore attitude, you know the “desire to NOT stand out” and the “opposite of hardcore”… is maybe what works if one really needs to make a mark these days amongst the glut of dining choices on offer.

That said, being normcore, is not as easy at it looks. One has to be methodical about materiality, textures, lighting, form, layout, and overall aesthetic planning. There’s a difference between a space or restaurant that’s minimally Designed vs. one that is just… well… empty.

BEP Vietnamese Kitchen opened just recently, and the group who runs it knows exactly what they’re doing since they’ve spent all these years perfecting the casual Vietnamese offer through their other brand, Nha Trang. BEP is located in a little alleyway just behind PURE Gym Soho off Staunton Street with a panoramic glazed window framed in a seemingly untreated silver aluminum cladding. The feeling is that of a diner you’ve seen before, and the immediate familiarity and openness in the facade design (also a row of tall chairs for outdoor seating), makes anyone feel welcome in this joint.

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The interior and exterior work is designed by Candace Campos of ID, originally from Los Angeles, now based in Hong Kong. And Before BEP, Campos has worked on other F&B projects in the city such as Mana, Tate Dining Room, and Heirloom and a few other residential projects under her belt. Campos kept things minimal at BEP with light timber tables, and sexy chairs that look like folded cardboard. Columns are clad in square stark white ceramic tiles with a dark grouting which creates a “subway” style grid, underpinning all the light timber and raw concrete finishes. It feels like a cool easy anteen in Brooklyn or Los Angeles. 

Together with Campos, the branding work for BEP was executed by Danielle Huthart through her firm, Whitespace, with denim uniforms designed by Paola Sinisterra of Tangram (apparently). This is a style trio that’s hard to beat.

Oh and the food… so my friend, Louise, took me here one Saturday, and everything they’ve got are easy to eat shareable snacky dishes like Squid Cakes, Pomelo Salad, Stir Fried Clams, Beef Salad, Sesame Rice Crackers, Garlic Fried Chicken Wings, various options of Bun Chay (dry noodle with fried goods on top), and you know the basic Pho offerings. For those who are into that stuff… there’s plenty of Sriracha for you to plop into your meals. Price wise its a great deal with meals coming out to about 100hkd a person (and it’s Central…AND it’s a place you actually WANT to be seen in!) It could be my new local.

My favorite dish? The Banh Xeo, a thin flour crepe stuffed with shrimps, pork, lettuce, and herbs. I loved it with fish sauce. So delicious. Give it a go. It’s very economical, nothing to lose, lots to gain.

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Some Photos via BEP Facebook. Some Photos by Me.

EAT BEP Vietnamese Kitchen . Lower Ground Floor, 9-11 Staunton Street, SOHO, Central, Hong Kong . T: +852 25227533 / DESIGN Candace Campos of ID / BRANDING Whitespace Hong Kong 

JJ.

 

DESIGN NOTES: Facebook Hong Kong’s Headquarters Localizes With Wall Graphics Similar To Works of Local Artist

Making the rounds on the interwebs is Facebook’s new Hong Kong show headquarters on the 60th floor of One Island East. At 11,000 sq.ft, Facebook in Hong Kong  is all typically very “Facebook” in terms of office programming and interior design. The Coconuts Hong Kong blog calls it “super hip” and “luxurious”. Although the office is primarily a marketing showroom (since most of the coding works are done at Facebook’s headquarters in California), its cool to see that there is a need to have such a “visible” office in Hong Kong to represent the Asian Market… ie. Hong Kong earns Facebook a lot of $$$$.

That said, it’s weird then that the “Cool graffiti with a Hong Kong flair” that Coconuts Hong Kong writes about that adorns Facebook Hong Kong’s new space closely mirrors the work of one of Hong Kong’s art darlings, Peter Yuill, whom I interviewed and featured on this blog several times before. As far as I know, Yuill didn’t execute the works in the Facebook headquarters, but he wouldn’t tell me more than that. That said, hopefully since Hong Kong makes Facebook a lot of money, it would be nice to see Facebook giving back to the local context and creative culture instead of setting foot in the city, and simply doing a god-forbid, “China Copy” of local Hong Kong artist’s works… which I hope is not the case in this situation. It’s okay to import a brand in the city, especially if it makes a brand money, but to do a surface and merely visual representation of local Hong Kong art and artist’s work, instead of outright cooperative engagement with the artist, is more harm to the brand, and will most likely make that brand lose street cred amongst  a percentage of its core constituents.

Will report if I hear anything more about this. I think Peter’s work is excellent, and i’ve seen his work in different commercial and F&B environments before. It’s really weird to see a Peter Yuill-type work in someone’s office that isn’t done by Peter himself… and it’s quite a wonky version of his style as well.

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UPDATE 14.07.28 5:30PM: Quite a discussion is happening on the comments area over on our Facebook Page, where some of our readers have remarked on the close similarity between works by artist, Tsang Tsou Choi and Peter Ross Art. Tsang Tsou Choi aka. “King of Kowloon” is deceased, but Peter Ross still makes art in Hong Kong to this day. Most recently Peter Ross’ work was featured in Hong Kong Magazine.

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PHOTO CREDITS: All Images of Facebook Hong Kong’s Interiors above via MARKETING INTERACTIVE / Coconuts Hong Kong. Last three images copyright Peter Yuill from his social media accounts and website.

DESIGN Peter Yuill

JJ.

#theWanderlist: Fashionistos, Design Junkies, and Carnivores at ED1TUS

Wong Chuk Hang, Hong Kong’s rough industrial district on the West Side of town may at first seem like a collection of junky old factory buildings right now, but in a couple of years time, one may just have to say that this area could be the city’s closest contender to a “true” design centre. And by Design Centre, i’m not talking about consumer focused centres like PMQ, i’m talking about the area in town where design, fashion, food, and art can converge organically due to a healthy and well supported creative business eco-system. Mix that in with the need for REALLY sizeable and open loft-like spaces that creatives generally yearn for… then you’ve got an organic business enclave.

The Lane Crawford headquarters are located here and so is the SPRING Workshop, and a handful of designer’s showrooms in The Factory…  all beautiful, contemporary, and very in the moment. This week, I wanted to highlight a new addition to the neighborhood… a menswear-focused showroom for distributors dubbed, ED1TUS, located a few doors down from Lane Crawford.

David Wakely, the company’s co-founder and head curator, toured me and my friends around one Saturday and we basically stayed for a couple of hours checking out everything since sample sales were on live.

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ED1TUS responds to Hong Kong’s evidently strong Menswear market in relation to all of Asia, which is apparently twice the size of the Asian womenswear market. FYI, Menswear sales in the region including China also account for 20% of the global luxury market.

Here’s the thing, until the last few years,  just when the “Sartorial Dandy” became a thing for all guys, “Menswear” as a sector used to be safe, boring, utilitarian, and formal. Now guys feel that it is okay to dress more fashionable, and men are being educated by bespoke suiting shops like The Armoury and Moustache. David, a seasoned ex-menswear buyer for Lane Crawford, saw the opportunity for more brand awareness, diversity, and further education for the region, catering to an ever growing “Middle Luxury Market” composed of young men always in search of the new, the cool, the interesting, and the different… ie. labels not yet readily available in high end department stores, but with a style clout and price range above the likes of Zara and the Gap.

The ED1TUS showroom is roomy and spacious, with nothing for sale but a few menswear accessories, knick knacks, and magazines. The showroom is not closed and is open to the public as evidence of its shared space collaboration with modern furniture destination Casa Capriz (who picked up from Chai Wan and moved front end operations here in this showroom), and the inclusion of a deli dubbed, The Butchers Club, a restaurant open to the public for lunch and dinner, and has become a destination in Hong Kong for many looking for great deli sandwiches and amazing steak dinners.

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Brands on offer include a casual Italian contemporary brand, Mauro Grifoni, cashmere styles by Drumohr, olive oil finished leathers by Stewart, and handmade footwear by CM Made In Italy. Some items from ED1TUS I also love include men’s bags by Meilleur Ami, fragrances by Mirko Buffini, bath and body products by Australia’s Gentleman’s Brand Co.

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For those gents looking for items for the home, the Casa Capriz showroom offers masculine unique and vintage items for the home with emphasis on the 1950’s to 1970’s modern era, and amazing lamps designed by Lumio. 

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Check out the showroom, because one of the three founders are always there. If not David, then his partners Jino Khidir (ex-Tom Ford) and Jules Shah (ex-Monocle and Konzepp) will be there on hand to assist. For Casa Capriz, founder, Irene Capriz, will always be there.

Speaking of Irene Capriz… I’m really loving these table selections from her curated furniture shop… if Only Hong Kong had larger living rooms in general!

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I’m a big fan of this sweat style from Mauro Grifoni.

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I also would like to thank my dear friend and art advisor, Zoe Pena (right) for the amazing lunch she hosted at her gallery, LIGHTBOMBS Contemporary, located a few doors down from Lane Crawford and ED1TUS. Through the lunch, I met the really cool editor and home stylist, Kissa Castaneda, who is the sole reason why I subscribed to all issues of ELLE Decor Philippines (obviously I’m a fan), and is now bringing a bit of the magic she brought at ELLE Decor for us here in Hong Kong via her new gig at Home Journal.

Welcome to Hong Kong, Kissa!

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All of us ended up rummaging through ED1TUS and Casa Capriz for a couple of hours to burn off that lunch. It was good times. 

Nice to see the Wong Chuk Hang hood buzzing and doing so well!

VISIT ED1TUS (with Casa Capriz + The Butchers Club Deli) . Shui Ki Industrial Building, 16th FL No.18, Wong Chuk Hang Road, Aberdeen, Hong Kong . T: +852 9760 0437 (ED1TUS) . T: +852-2884 0768 (The Butchers Cub Deli) . T: +852 9318 1730 (Casa Capriz)

JJ.